City council completes move into new premises
- Credit: Archant
Ely’s defunct magistrates’ court began its new life as the home of the City of Ely Council this week.
Work to move furniture from the council’s Market Street offices into the court began last Thursday, with the old offices set to be handed back to landlords East Cambridgeshire District Council, in the coming weeks.
It is hoped that the city council’s public meetings will begin in the former magistrates’ court later in the year.
Speaking last month about the move, the mayor of Ely, Councillor Lis Every said: “We are looking forward to the move. It has been a long time coming because it is a listed building and we have had to be very careful in how we have gone about renovating it.
“There have been a lot of people involved as the council would like to thank all of them for their help.”
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The City of Ely Council took ownership of the building back in March 2013, purchasing the property for a nominal £1 sum.
The courthouse, which English Heritage say dates back to the 1820s, has stood empty since March 2011 when it was closed by the Ministry of Justice as part of a cost-cutting drive, with all cases sent to Cambridge Magistrates’ Court.
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As part of its wider plan, the city council hopes to include other community uses within the building, which could includes a museum and art gallery space, as well as music and concert facilities.